Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Double Dose of Junk Science Vaccine Insanity

First up is Prince Charles of England, who has no qualms about giving a Royal warrant to a company that sells bogus "polio, typhoid, and yellow fever vaccines" based on homeopathic idiocy. As the article notes, homeopathy involves diluting substances to levels that make it all but impossible for the original substance to even exist in the solution.
Homeopathic remedy are commonly diluted, in their parlance, to 24C – that is, diluted to one part in a hundred, then that diluted solution is diluted to one part in a hundred, 24 times. To give you some idea of how dilute that is, the allowable concentration of arsenic in US tapwater is 4C, and at 12C there is only a 60 per cent chance of a single molecule of the original substance existing, if you started with a mole** of the substance. Or – I love this – one-third of a drop of the original substance would create a 13C solution if it were evenly mixed in all the oceans of the world. 13C is, remember, 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 times stronger than 24C, a common dilution. A 200C dilution of duck liver is given as a treatment for the flu. That’s the equivalent of one molecule of duck liver in 10320 universes the size of our one. The more dilute it is, most homeopaths say, the better.
Polio is one of a few diseases that could be eradicated worldwide (following smallpox) but efforts have been stymied in the past by rumors that vaccines cause sterility or AIDS or other dangerous rumors. Instead of wiping out this scourge, it persists in parts of Africa and Asia despite the best efforts of scientists to immunize rural populations.

Vaccination is key, and now you've got Prince Charles (by giving the business Royal warrant) is endorsing junk science - homeopathy - as it provides "alternative travel vaccines" alternatives to conventional travel immunizations. Given the way that diseases can circumnavigate the globe in the time it takes to fly around the world, this is a stupendously stupid idea. It exposes the population to diseases that should be protected via standard vaccines and immunizations.

Prince Charles' position may lead to death or needless illnesses.

That's child's play compared to the damage done by Andrew Wakefield, whose bogus findings claimed to link MMR vaccines to autism. Parents have needlessly exposed their kids to easily preventable illnesses because a ginned up study by an anti-vaccine advocate claimed that there was a link.

There was none as researchers continue looking into the study data.
The conclusions of the 1998 paper by Andrew Wakefield and colleagues were renounced by 10 of its 13 authors and later retracted by the medical journal Lancet, where it was published. Still, the suggestion the MMR shot was connected to autism spooked parents worldwide and immunization rates for measles, mumps and rubella have never fully recovered.

A new examination found, by comparing the reported diagnoses in the paper to hospital records, that Wakefield and colleagues altered facts about patients in their study.

The analysis, by British journalist Brian Deer, found that despite the claim in Wakefield's paper that the 12 children studied were normal until they had the MMR shot, five had previously documented developmental problems. Deer also found that all the cases were somehow misrepresented when he compared data from medical records and the children's parents.

Called 'an elaborate fraud'
Wakefield could not be reached for comment despite repeated calls and requests to the publisher of his recent book, which claims there is a connection between vaccines and autism that has been ignored by the medical establishment. Wakefield now lives in the U.S. where he enjoys a vocal following including celebrity supporters like Jenny McCarthy.
While the British government stripped Wakefield of his right to practice medicine, he will not face justice for the fact that measles cases in the US and UK have exploded to epidemic levels as a result of his bogus study.

It will take years to recover from the damage done by this junk science.

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